Annual report pursuant to Section 13 and 15(d)

Commitments and Contingencies

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Commitments and Contingencies
12 Months Ended
Dec. 31, 2018
Commitments and Contingencies Disclosure [Abstract]  
Commitments and Contingencies Commitments and Contingencies
In connection with our acquisitions of CURNA, OPKO Diagnostics and OPKO Renal, we agreed to pay future consideration to the sellers upon the achievement of certain events. As a result, as of December 31, 2018, we have recorded $24.6 million as contingent consideration, with $2.4 million recorded within Accrued expenses and $22.2 million recorded within Other long-term liabilities in the accompanying Consolidated Balance Sheets. Refer to Note 5.
As previously disclosed, on September 7, 2018, the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) filed a lawsuit in the Southern District of New York (the “SEC Complaint”) against a number of individuals and entities (the “Defendants”), including the Company and its CEO and Chairman, Phillip Frost (“Dr. Frost”). The SEC alleged, among other things, that the Company (i) aided and abetted an illegal “pump and dump” scheme perpetrated by a number of the Defendants, and (ii) failed to file required Schedules 13D or 13G with the SEC. On December 27, 2018, the Company announced that the Company and Dr. Frost entered into settlement agreements with the Securities and Exchange Commission (the “Commission”), which upon approval of the court would resolve the SEC Complaint against each of them. The settlement was approved by the Court in January 2019. Pursuant to the settlement, and without admitting or denying any of the allegations of the Complaint, the Company is enjoined from violating Section 13(d) of the Exchange Act and paid a $100,000 penalty. Liability under Section 13(d) can be established without any showing of wrongful intent or negligence.
Following the SEC’s announcement of the SEC Complaint, we have been named in seven class action lawsuits and more than a dozen derivative suits relating to the allegations in the SEC Complaint among other matters. The Company intends to vigorously defend itself against the claims. Based on the early stages of these legal proceedings, at this time, the Company is not able to reasonably estimate a possible range of loss, if any, that may result from these allegations. For a more detailed discussion of pending matters, please see Part II, Item 1, “Legal Proceedings.”
In August 2017, we entered into a Commitment Letter (the “Commitment Letter”) with Veterans Accountable Care Group, LLC (“VACG”) in connection with the submission of a bid by its affiliate, the Veterans Accountable Care Organization, LLC (“VACO”) in response to a request for proposal (“RFP”) from the Veterans Health Administration (“VA”) regarding its Community Care Network. We were notified in January 2019 that the bid was awarded to a third party. If VACO were to have been successful in its bid, we would have acquired a fifteen percent (15%) membership interest in VACO. In addition, BioReference, our wholly-owned subsidiary, would have provided laboratory services for the Community Care Network, a region which currently includes approximately 2,133,000 veterans in the states of Massachusetts, Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, New York, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Rhode Island, Connecticut, Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia, and North Carolina.
Pursuant to the Commitment Letter and had VACO been successful in its bid, we committed to provide, or to arrange from a third party lender, a line of credit for VACG in the amount of $50.0 million (the “Facility”). Funds drawn under the Facility would be contributed by VACG to VACO in order to satisfy the financial stability requirement of VACO in connection with its submission of the RFP. VACG would not be permitted to draw down on the Facility unless and until the VHA awards a contract to VACO. The Facility would have a maturity of five (5) years. Interest on the Facility would be payable at a rate equal to 6.5% per annum, payable quarterly in arrears. The Facility would be subject to the negotiation of definitive documentation conditions customary for transactions of such type and otherwise acceptable to VACG and the lender under the Facility.
We accrue a liability for legal contingencies when we believe that it is both probable that a liability has been incurred and that we can reasonably estimate the amount of the loss. We review established accruals and adjust them to reflect ongoing negotiations, settlements, rulings, advice of legal counsel and other relevant information. To the extent new information is obtained and our views on the probable outcomes of claims, suits, assessments, investigations or legal proceedings change, changes in our accrued liabilities would be recorded in the period in which such determination is made. For the matters referenced in the paragraph below, the amount of liability is not probable or the amount cannot be reasonably estimated; and, therefore, accruals have not been made. In addition, in accordance with the relevant authoritative guidance, for matters which the likelihood of material loss is at least reasonably possible, we provide disclosure of the possible loss or range of loss; however, if a reasonable estimate cannot be made, we will provide disclosure to that effect.
From time to time, we may receive inquiries, document requests, Civil Investigative Demands (“CIDs”) or subpoenas from the Department of Justice, the Office of Inspector General and Office for Civil Rights (“OCR”) of the Department of Health and Human Services, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, various payors and fiscal intermediaries, and other state and federal regulators regarding investigations, audits and reviews. In addition to the matters discussed in this note, we are currently responding to CIDs, subpoenas or document requests for various matters relating to our laboratory operations. Some pending or threatened proceedings against us may involve potentially substantial amounts as well as the possibility of civil, criminal, or administrative fines, penalties, or other sanctions, which could be material. Settlements of suits involving the types of issues that we routinely confront may require monetary payments as well as corporate integrity agreements. Additionally, qui tam or “whistleblower” actions initiated under the civil False Claims Act may be pending but placed under seal by the court to comply with the False Claims Act’s requirements for filing such suits. Also, from time to time, we may detect issues of non-compliance with federal healthcare laws pertaining to claims submission and reimbursement practices and/or financial relationships with physicians, among other things. We may avail ourselves of various mechanisms to address these issues, including participation in voluntary disclosure protocols. Participating in voluntary disclosure protocols can have the potential for significant settlement obligations or even enforcement action. The Company generally has cooperated, and intends to continue to cooperate, with appropriate regulatory authorities as and when investigations, audits and inquiries arise.
In April 2017, the Civil Division of the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York (the “SDNY”) informed BioReference that it believes that, from 2006 to the present, BioReference had, in violation of the False Claims Act, improperly billed Medicare and TRICARE (both are federal government healthcare programs) for clinical laboratory services provided to hospital inpatient beneficiaries at certain hospitals. BioReference is reviewing and assessing the allegations made by the SDNY, and, at this point, BioReference has not determined whether there is any merit to the SDNY’s claims nor can it determine the extent of any potential liability. While management cannot predict the outcome of these matters at this time, the ultimate outcome could be material to our business, financial condition, results of operations, and cash flows.
We are a party to other litigation in the ordinary course of business. We do not believe that any such litigation will have a material adverse effect on our business, financial condition, results of operations or cash flows.
We expect to continue to incur substantial research and development expenses, including expenses related to the hiring of personnel and additional clinical trials. We expect that selling, general and administrative expenses will also increase as we expand our sales, marketing and administrative staff and add infrastructure, particularly as it relates to the launch of Rayaldee. We do not anticipate that we will generate substantial revenue from the sale of proprietary pharmaceutical products or certain of our diagnostic products for some time and we have generated only limited revenue from our pharmaceutical operations in Chile, Mexico, Israel, Spain, and Ireland, and from sale of the 4Kscore test. If we acquire additional assets or companies, fail to generate expected cash flow from BioReference, accelerate our product development programs or initiate additional clinical trials, we will need additional funds. If we are not able to secure additional funding when needed, we may have to delay, reduce the scope of, or eliminate one or more of our clinical trials or research and development programs or possible acquisitions.
We have employment agreements with certain executives of BioReference which provide for compensation and certain other benefits and for severance payments under certain circumstances. During the years ended December 31, 2018, 2017 and 2016, we recognized $4.9 million, $5.8 million and $17.9 million, respectively, of severance costs pursuant to these employment agreements as a component of Selling, general and administrative expense.
At December 31, 2018, we were committed to make future purchases for inventory and other items in 2019 that occur in the ordinary course of business under various purchase arrangements with fixed purchase provisions aggregating $98.5 million.